Pride leads to conflict; those who take advice are wise. – Proverbs 13:10 NLT
I’ve never been good with cars. My dad is a car guy and great with fixing most problems he comes across, but I lack that remarkable gift. Apparently, the car gene skips a generation! Early on, I knew if something went wrong with my car, other than being low on gas, I would need to take it to a mechanic or someone like my dad. I’ve learned to be okay with asking for help when something breaks with my car.
Most people are willing to ask for help when it comes to a car that’s making funny noises, an air conditioner that won’t turn on, or a hole in the roof you discover on a rainy day. Yet many people, when it comes to their marriages, refuse to get help when they’re dealing with challenges in their relationship with their spouse.
In Proverbs 13:10, the author of Proverbs writes, “Pride leads to conflict; those who take advice are wise.” The hebrew word for “pride” in this verse literally means “to boil,” like we would boil water on a stove.  This kind of pride bubbles from the inside out, refusing to learn anything from anyone. It’s the person who thinks to themself, “I can solve my own problems without anyone’s help. It’s nobody’s business but my own, and I should be able to figure it out.”
Our culture values independence and “self-made” people, but the truth is none of us can “fix” all our problems on our own. In various areas and seasons of life, eventually everyone will require the assistance of wise and godly people.
Next month, my wife and I will celebrate our 20th anniversary. Looking back over the decades we’ve shared, there have been many people (family, friends, mentors, counselors, pastors, etc.) who have come alongside us in various ways to help us move forward in areas where we were stuck. We’ve faced many challenges in our relationship over the years and have been able to overcome them thanks to the help and support of the Lord through wise and godly people.
Maybe you’re in a place in your marriage today where you and your spouse are stuck. Maybe you can’t seem to get on the same page about money, parenting, how much you should let each other’s parents be involved in your family, or your work schedule. Perhaps you feel that no matter how hard you try, the spark you once had seems to have been extinguished like someone pouring water over the coals of a once burning campfire.
Have you and your spouse reached out to family or friends for guidance, but you still feel stuck? It may be time to reach out to a pastor at your church or a Christian counselor for direction. Meeting with a pastor or counselor, even if your spouse does not attend, can provide you with a healthy perspective that will allow you to move forward in your life and marriage. We can’t change our spouses, but we can change ourselves.
As you’re looking for a Christian counselor, here are some questions you should ask before choosing one:
– How do you incorporate your faith in Jesus into your counseling?
– Where did you go to school and get licensed?
– Tell me about your experience in counseling couples with similar issues.
– When and how often can you meet with us?
– Do you accept my insurance and work on a sliding payment scale based on our income?
– Talk to them about their statement of faith to make sure you’re on the same page with your core beliefs.
Pastor Craig Groeschel once said, “It’s not a sign of weakness to ask for help. It’s a sign of wisdom.”  Don’t let pride boil in your heart or marriage. Ask wise, godly people for help, and allow the Lord to speak through them to you.
1. In what area are you and your spouse struggling with the most right now?
2. Ask your spouse if they would be willing to go to counseling with you to work on this together. If they choose not to go, prayerfully consider meeting with a pastor or Christian counselor on your own to get the direction and support you need.
3. If you need help finding a Christian counselor, you may want to look at the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors.